Aus­tria mid­fielder Harnik re­turns for Ire­land qual­i­fier

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Han­nover mid­fielder Martin Harnik has been sum­moned by Aus­tria for next week's World Cup qual­i­fier against Ire­land and a friendly against Slo­vakia.

Harnik, who missed the games against Wales and Ser­bia in Oc­to­ber with a calf in­jury, re­places Sturm Graz striker Deni Alar in the 23-man squad an­nounced yes­ter­day by coach Mar­cel Koller.

“He is fit again and play­ing well. He is an im­por­tant player for us,” Koller said about Harnik, who scored 14 goals in 61 games for the team.

Frank­furt goal­keeper Heinz Lind­ner has been added be­cause Koller's first-choice goal­keeper, Rober Almer, was ruled out for six months with a knee in­jury.

Aus­tria plays Ire­land at the Ernst Hap­pel Sta­dium in Vi­enna on 12 Novem­ber, and hosts Slo­vakia at the same venue three days later.

Af­ter three qual­i­fy­ing matches, Ire­land and Ser­bia lead Group D with seven points. Wales has five points and Aus­tria has four.

“It's an im­por­tant game at home,” Koller said.

“They play a Bri­tish type of foot­ball, phys­i­cally strong, and are dan­ger­ous go­ing for­ward. They are pa­tient, don't get hec­tic. It's a tough task for us.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malta

© PressReader. All rights reserved.